Commentary

Disciples


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Thursday, July 3, 1890

     5.10 P.M. W. in his room, by the window, fanning himself. Good color. Complained however of the heat of the day. Raining slightly. Had been reading. Pointed out to me the Post. "I have been finding out here that Lord Salisbury has been offered a dukedom of some sort by the Queen for conduct she likes—perhaps for measures pushed—I don't know: but it interests

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me to see that he has declined—will not have the dukedom. It is almost as good as Carlyle's, if not better—perhaps more significant."
But even Carlyle's expressed disregard for decoration &c. "not wholly disregard" for "I suppose every man—the most militant, antagonistic—likes to be recognized, appreciated—as I say it, made much of."

     He had a letter from Ed Wilkins today. "He has had some sort of kick-up there. Ed is very undemonstrative—says little at all times—has a good deal of phlegm—and therefore I do not see just what has happened—but something, without a doubt. He speaks of coming down this way again—wants to—says he wants to be with me." I thought this singular. Why did he write that, knowing Warren was in the place today? I asked W.: "I suppose you and Warren are thoroughly adjusted?" To which: "Yes—thoroughly—and I may say further that not only in Warren but in all things mine these days I consider myself very fortunate—very fortunately situated"—with a smile— "even if my pieces are returned by the magazine editors—by the Century, Harper's, the Cosmopolitan, Nineteenth Century"—by the latter?—I had not known. "Yes—by it as by the others. I did not like the last Century note—Gilder's—it had something covert—like that last something sometimes in a dish at the table—I don't like it—it spoils the dish—but I don't know what it is,"—and then when I asked— "but what do you care?"—he said simply: "Nothing at all. I would not turn a finger for any one of them—not a finger. It is not for them I care, or their magazines, but the public ear—I wish to reach the public—to deliver my message." And further— "I do not object to your making all this as public as you choose—stating it anywhere—though not, of course, to lug it in." There were some objecting to his seeming preference for Ingersoll &c. "Well—if that is so, then I must take the first opportunity to clinch it—to make even more emphatic statement of my feeling. Ingersoll, like O'Connor—they call mad—but it is a great mistake. Let

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me see by what one word could I measure them? I am at a loss for a word: call them tower-like—standing alone—straight—an identity—vast—erect—not to be waived aside. There are plenty of men made up of a dozen influences—centers of scholarship, what-not—but these men are themselves, personalities, consistent, self-sustaining, identities."
He wished no one to have "any concern about my friendships"—they would, "take care of themselves." When I took ground that "any life is as interesting as any other, rightly or faithfully told, he assented. "That is true to the bone—that would have tickled William O'Connor." Then— "I have by the way had a letter from Mrs. O'Connor—she is well" &c.


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